Christmas telly is the best, isn’t it? There’s just so much to choose from. You have the soaps with their overly dramatic Christmas episodes, the Christmas specials of your favourite dramas and comedies, and then there are the films. Who doesn’t have memories of going through the TV guide when they were younger, circling the films we wanted to see, even scheduling our own plans around what’s on the TV that day.

Finding what you want to watch amongst the mammoth TV listings can be difficult. So we’ve done the hard work for you. Here are the best films for car lovers over the Christmas period.

Fast & Furious 7 – 9.00pm, 23 December on ITV2

What started off as a rather lowkey film about illegal street racing has turned into the biggest action film franchise on the planet. With the pandemic meaning Fast & Furious 9 has been delayed until 2021, ITV are providing you with your nitrous-fuelled fix until the new year.

Fast & Furious 7 is first up on 23 December. This one sees the gang consisting of Vin Diesel, The Rock, and Paul Walker (in his tragically final appearance) take on Jason Statham, who is out for revenge for the death of his brother in Fast & Furious 6. In this one, you’ll see the usual range of beautiful and fast cars. Our pick of the bunch is the Lykan Hypersport, one of the most expensive cars in the world at $3.4 million!

Cars 3 - 2.15pm, Christmas Eve on BBC 1

Christmas is a time for family, so what better time to pass your love of all things four-wheeled on to your children? Christmas Eve is the day to do it, with two family classics on the telly. The first is a modern one, with the third instalment of Pixar’s Cars series.

This one sees Lightning McQueen and Mater back up to their tricks as the race car and his mechanic mate try and train the next generation of racers to follow in their footsteps…tyre tracks?

Chitty Chitty Bang Bang - 3.10pm, Christmas Eve on Channel 5

The other children’s film on Christmas Eve is Chitty Chitty Bang Bang. The film is an absolute classic, one that you couldn’t see being made today. The film tells the story of an inventor (played by screen icon Dick van Dyke) who turns a winning Grand Prix racecar into a magical flying machine. 

The songs, the special effects, and the nightmare-inducing villain are what make this film a classic. Co-written by Roald Dahl, it’s a film that will put a smile on everyone’s face.

Thelma and Louise - 9pm, Christmas Eve on 5 Star

Once the kids have gone to bed, why not tune in to one of the great road movies? Thelma and Louise tells the story of two women named…Thelma and Louise, who leave their neglectful and abusive husbands to go on a crime spree road trip across America.

Directed by the legend that is Ridley Scott and starring Geena Davis and Susan Sarandon, the film is a lot better than you might remember. And if you haven’t watched it, why not curl up with some mince pies and a glass of sherry this Christmas Eve?

The Italian Job - 3.30pm, Christmas Day on Channel 4

There are a few films that always scream Christmas. The Great Escape, Dambusters, Grease – the non-Christmas classics that are always on TV at this time of year. For the car lover, none come better than the swinging sixties classic The Italian Job.

If you don’t know the film, it’s the tale of a gang of British criminals led by Michael Caine who plot to steal some gold bullion in Rome. The centrepiece of the film is the stunning chase sequence after the heist, where three red, white and blue Mini Coopers wind their way through the streets and sewers of Rome as they avoid the Italian police. You’ll be humming the theme tune for days afterwards, just be careful how you drive!

Spectre - 8.00pm, Christmas Day on ITV2

Christmas wouldn’t be Christmas without a Bond film, and the most recent entry in the franchise gets an airing this festive season. Spectre is one of the darkest, most complex of the entries in the series. But it still has what we all love to see – a pair of beautiful cars.

The scene takes us, coincidentally, to Rome where Bond has found a meeting of the minds behind Spectre. A car chase almost inevitably ensues and we get to what we love about Bond movies. James is behind the wheel of an Aston Martin DB10, finished in the same silver of the Goldfinger-era DB5, but with a few modern upgrades like an ejector seat and a flamethrower. He is pursued by the villain’s henchman, driving a Jaguar C-X75 – quite possibly the first hybrid electric villain car in film history. It’s a thrilling chase and a reminder of why we love Bond movies so much.

Fast & Furious 8 - 8.30pm, Boxing Day on ITV2

The second festival instalment of Fast & Furious action comes with the eighth and most recent film. More crazy car chases and stunts, but with a twist. This time, main character Dom (Vin Diesel) has turned bad! So what do the Fast and Furious crew do? Turn to Jason Statham’s villain from the previous film to help.

Star of the film, other than Charlize Theron’s turn as the villain, is a chase scene across the ice – cars versus a nuclear submarine! A film that goes perfect with leftover turkey and lots of xmas chocolate.

Planes, Trains, and Automobiles - 4.05pm, 28th December on Channel 4

After all the flights of fantasy and crazy action films, you might need to be brought back down to Earth. So why not one of the finest comedies ever made? Planes, Trains, and Automobiles tells the story of two hapless businessmen (played by comedy legends Steve Martin and John Candy) as they both try and get home for Thanksgiving.

Anyone who has braved the Christmas commute or has tried to travel a long distance during the festive season will recognise the frustration and franticness of travelling at this time of year. Something to make you laugh and warm your heart to end the festive period.

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